Dave the Diver proves there’s plenty of fish in the sea… to eat!
Dave? You there? Hello? Oh, there you are. Hey Dave! Thanks for taking my call. Listen, I got a huge proposition for you — no, nothing fishy. Well, yes, it’s fishy, but not in the way my business typically is. You see, there’s a mysterious “Blue Hole” that just popped up in the middle of the ocean, and all types of fish from all over the world congregate here. I’m talking clownfish, urchin, grouper, eel, cuttlefish, shark, jellyfish, tang, anglerfish — you name it, it’s here! Which is perfect for my new sushi restaurant that just opened, and I want YOU to be responsible for gathering up tasty sea critters for us to gobble up. I’ll give you all the sushi you can handle — whaddaya say, pal?
So begins Dave’s ocean adventure in Dave the Diver, a pixel art masterpiece that’s two parts exploration, one part cooking, and a hundred parts addicting. Currently in development by Korea’s MINTROCKET, Dave the Diver is already a beloved experience despite its unfinished state, boasting an Overwhelmingly Positive rating on Steam with nearly 1,000 reviews at the time of this writing. And having poured about 15 hours in 2 days into the game myself, I can say with confidence that, no matter how many fish there are in the sea, I’m determined to catch (and eat) them all.
Dave the Diver opens up with Dave agreeing to help his friend run a sushi restaurant, first by catching all the fish to eat by day, followed by serving said fish to customers at night. At first, Dave is a little hesitant to help out, but when he learns that this restaurant is taking advantage of a mysterious “Blue Hole” filled with just about every fish found in the deep blue sea, well… that changes things. And with the promise of all the sushi Dave can eat? Now that’s a hard deal to pass up! So Dave spends his days hauling up as much fish as he possibly can, then serving up those tasty sea critters when the sun goes down. What more could a diver ask for?
Unfortunately, the Blue Hole attracts more than just fish — all sorts of people start taking an interest in the area, and Dave’s their go-to guy, apparently. A marine biologist, an archeaologist, an activist, and even a card collector ask for Dave’s help under the deep blue sea, so be prepared to take on more than just meal requests for friends and acquaintences. And speaking of meal requests — some customers won’t budge until they get the exact dish they want, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to serve it up to them. Poor Dave can’t catch his breath, let alone a break!
As stated before, Dave the Diver is broken up into two major segments — exploration and cooking. The exploration portion is the bulk of the game and is likely what players will spend the most time on. Dave’s days are split into three parts — morning, afternoon, and evening — with diving being taken care of during the morning and afternoon (at first) and cooking during the evening. In the beginning, it’s just Dave diving down with his base gear and wits alone, but as time goes on he will be able to take crafted weapons and upgraded equipment with him, allowing him to hold more fish, pack more oxygen, dive deeper, etc. This is really good news for players, as catching pretty much everything that moves is an impulse far too strong to ignore.
While Dave is diving for dinner, he’s also fulfilling requests that he receives from friends and fish alike. Exploring the depths to find lost parts, packages, and even societies is all par for the course for Dave. He’ll even find himself defending his newfound dolphin friends from time to time, freeing them from nets or fending off poachers to ensure their safety. All in a day’s work for this daring diver!
Up where they walk, run, and stay all day in the sun, Dave will have his hands full with the restaurant. Setting up the menu requires the catches of the day, which can be upgraded to cost more to hungry customers if you snagged enough of the same type of fish. Be careful, though, as upgrading means losing some of your haul, meaning you may not have enough left to serve to customers. If you run out of fish to serve up, you’ll have to resort to seaweed and rice alone, which is… disappointing, to say the least. Ensuring at least one successful run per day will keep the restaurant running; soon, you’ll have so many customers you’ll have to hire help to run orders while you serve up tea and beer. Bottoms up!
Honestly, Dave the Diver has so few flaws at this juncture that I’d like to advise anyone interested to just pick it up now. It’s extremely deep (pun intended), intensely addicting, and crafted with a whole lot of love. There are so many goals to achieve that it’s hard to get bored, but there are plenty of days where it’s fun to just catch a bunch of fish and go home. Dave the Diver is a great catch and one I recommend reeling in before it gets away (i.e., priced higher).
Be sure to check out Dave the Diver on Steam today!